Press release: Veterinary Cannabis Society
The Veterinary Cannabis Society, the first 501 (c) (3) US nonprofit focused on raising awareness of cannabis as a medicine for animals, has just launched its website and educational portal for veterinarians, pet parents, and cannabis product companies. The Veterinary Cannabis Society (VCS) was founded in 2020 after a team of dedicated veterinarians and cannabis industry executives identified the glaring gap in education about the safe and appropriate use of cannabis to treat animals. VCS ‘mission is to create lasting solutions that ensure the safe use of cannabis in pets through education, advocacy and promoting product standards.
VCS offers a wide range of resources for veterinarians looking for alternative tools to better serve their patients, as well as pet parents curious about how cannabis can be used effectively on their pet. Educational resources such as critically reviewed articles, a curated research library, podcasts, videos and presentations are made available to VCS members.
Updates on local, state, and federal developments will be highlighted on the website as an added benefit for members and non-members following the matter. Knowing about these updates is vital for practicing veterinarians as the majority of state veterinary boards do not take a solid stance on either hemp or high-THC cannabis products, making it difficult for veterinarians to control the legal parameters within their specific areas want to understand state. VCS works to promote guidelines and sensible laws in states where cannabis is legal to ensure veterinarians can safely recommend cannabis to their patients.
“Veterinarians nowadays struggle to discuss cannabis with pet parents because they either lack the knowledge or want to avoid potential legal repercussions. No veterinarian should have to risk his license or his livelihood just because he is trying to do what is right for his patient, ”said Dr. Trina Hazzah, 15 year old integrative veterinary oncologist and president and co-founder of VCS. “What we strive for is an educated and empowered global veterinary cannabis community.”
The nonprofit works with leading executives in the cannabis industry who manufacture pet products and provides guidance and recommendations on how to comply with pet safety standards.
“Despite the prejudices of some people against cannabis, we must acknowledge the research published to date that suggests cannabis is a potent drug that, when used properly, is safer than many of the pharmaceutical veterinarians used on a daily basis. However, before we recommend a product, we have to ensure that the product meets certain safety and quality standards that may deviate from the existing framework for human products, ”said Dr. Gary Richter, Vice President and Co-Founder of VCS.
VCS welcomes veterinarians, pet parents, and pet cannabis product industry leaders to become members and offers a variety of membership options to suit each party’s needs:
- For veterinarians: Veterinary Professional Membership enables practicing veterinarians, students, or veterinary assistants to meet with like-minded colleagues who are up to date with the latest in veterinary medicine. Veterinarians can be added to the directory of VCS practitioners to connect animal parents with cannabis-knowledgeable practitioners. Various forms of educational content are also available that will soon include RACE-approved lectures to meet state licensing requirements.
- For pet parents: Pet Parent membership provides educational presentations, written articles, and access to the VCS podcast and video library for curious pet owners. Through this annual membership, pet parents can get answers to questions about cannabis that their local veterinarian cannot or will not answer. These members will also have the opportunity to join a growing community of like-minded animal lovers interested in alternative medical approaches.
- For product manufacturers: The product industry membership enables brand representatives become part of a growing community of allied professionals and keep up to date with advocacy developments on a local, state and federal basis. Soon, companies will also be able to register products via the “VCS Seal of Approval” program, which offers pet parents a safe and label-accurate product when they buy.
VCS is currently exploring opportunities for corporate partnerships with organizations that want to contribute to the advancement of veterinary cannabis medicine and is always welcome to make individual philanthropic contributions.